Life on the Chrism Trail

Homily for the Twentieth Sunday in Ordinary Time

August 16, 2020
Saint Patrick Cathedral
Fort Worth, Texas

Isaiah 56:1,6-7
Psalm 67:2-3, 5, 6, 8
Romans 11:13-15, 29-32
Matthew 15:21-28

We are each familiar with the story from the Book of Exodus of the Israelites wandering in the wilderness on their escape from Egypt towards the land promised them by God. In that story we hear about how God provides manna from heaven to sustain the Israelites and to keep them on their journey without fear of starving. The Israelites soon become bored with the bread that has come down from heaven — the manna, and they complain because they begin to see themselves as entitled to it. Instead of receiving the manna as a gift from God, they begin to merely see it as something that falls from the sky. The relationship initiated by God with the Israelites is the heart of their identity — an identity beyond their racial, ethnic, or familial differences with others.

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